I’m a member of the Metanexus Institute which is a global interdisciplinary institute. They research transdisciplinary approaches to profound questions by using neurology, cosmology, philosophy, biology, physiology, theology and cognitive science.
While reading this month’s publication I came across an interesting study concerning neurotheology (the study of how religion impacts the neurological system). The following quote is from their publication, “The Global Spiral”:
As people persisted in practicing mantra based meditation over time they would be more resilient to stress Have less low grade depression Live longer Get sick less Experience more pleasure in living And feel closer to some Transcendent EntityThis last point is the neurotheological point. After years of research, Benson found that those who practice meditation as a form of prayer tended to have greater health gains than those who practiced meditation merely as a vehicle to greater physical and psychological health benefits. When people meditate via the Rosary, the Jesus Prayer, or Centering Prayer – with some psychological posture of faith in God – they achieve greater measurable health benefits than subjects who mediate simply to improve their health. Believing in God while stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system during faith-based meditative behavior is a superior means of delivering health benefits to the mind/body than via mere agnostic or behavioral medical meditation.
So the more we pray to God, the healthier we become, and the less stress and sickness we will have in our lives. Something tells me there’s something to this spirituality thing…